Monday, September 29, 2008

Chipotle Mayonnaise Recipe & Bogle Petite Sirah

Carvers Restaurant in Durango, Colorado, is a wonderful casual restaurant and brew pub that serves (among other dishes) great sandwiches and burgers with a signature Chipotle Mayonnaise. Chipotles are smoked Jalapeño peppers, and usually sold in cans in a tomato-like Adobo sauce. (On a totally unrelated note, a friend of ours in Durango always gets strange looks from the Carvers waitresses when he orders a veggie burger with bacon.) Being friends with the owners, we were able to coax from them the Chipotle Mayonnaise recipe. Despite the fact that recipes can’t be copyrighted, we wouldn’t want to give away the exact Carvers recipe, so here’s our slightly modified version. (Besides, the original recipe calls for ingredients to make gallons of the stuff.)

  • Chipotles in adobo sauce chopped very fine (2-3 chiles from a 6-oz can – the rest can be successfully frozen for later use)
  • Tablespoon fresh crushed Garlic
  • Tablespoon chopped fresh Cilantro
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • Tablespoon Honey
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • (Alternately, all ingredients can be added to a food processor to make this Chipotle base mix.)
  • Mix Chipotle mix with your favorite Mayonnaise – start with maybe a cup of Mayonnaise for the above amount of Chipotle base mix.
  • Add more or less Mayo depending on your heat tolerance and the strength of the Chipotles.

This is wonderful with any kind of sandwiches, burgers, nachos, other Mexican dishes, and even seafood cocktails. If you’re ever in Durango, stop by Carvers and try the original. The restaurant also has the best craft-brewed beers in the region. (Carvers was the second micro brewery in the state, opening just a few months after New Belgium, of Fat Tire fame.)

The most recent time we used Chipotle Mayonnaise was with some veggie/mushroom/cheese burgers. We accompanied it with....
Bogle Petite Sirah 2005 – California
We’d forgotten how much we liked this wine, and we hadn’t re-tasted it since we started writing these wine notes. Nose of dark cherry and pepper. Smooth, integrated tastes of boysenberry and spice. Just enough tannins to give the wine some weight. Very much along the stylistic lines of the Concannon we reviewed (and especially liked) previously. This, too, has that almost Zinfandel tone to it. House. $12

Friday, September 26, 2008

Scallop & Onion Stew

We’re back from a good trip to Scotland, and although we didn’t return with any Scottish wine, we did have one of the best dinners of our lives (Three Chimneys restaurant on the isle of Skye), had a couple of interesting whiskey tastings, and enjoyed randomly buying inexpensive wines from various market shelves. We also brought back a few books, including a Scottish fish cookbook.
Last night, we adapted a scallop and onion stew from the cookbook.

  • Quarter large scallops, or leave tiny bay scallops whole
  • Simmer in a little water and white wine until done
  • In a separate pan, sauté finely chopped onion in butter until soft (not brown)
  • Add a tablespoon of flour to the onions when done, and then add the scallop liquid
  • Boil for a few minutes, then add scallops, about a quarter cup of cream, and a dash of Dijon mustard
  • Heat (but don’t boil) the stew, and transfer to individual baking/serving casseroles
  • Top each casserole with a mix of bread crumbs and grated Scottish cheddar
  • Broil for a minute or two, just until the top begins to slightly brown and the cheese melts
  • Serve with mashed potatoes (we used non-mashing red potatoes from our garden and they were great)
We paired this with a Mayacamas Sauvignon Blanc we previously reviewed, and it was an excellent match.